With two remaining years in office, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte wants increased collaboration with lawmakers for the quick passage of major legislative measures aimed at improving the lives of Filipinos.
“I thank Congress for its support to this administration’s programs. Congress has been very productive. But much more remains to be done,” President Duterte said in his 5th State of the Nation Address (SONA) at the Batasang Pambansa on Monday.
“You know actually my speech if you followed it carefully, it’s all a plea to Congress to do this, to do that, to make a law or craft a whatever.”
The President urged Congress to pass a law establishing the Department of Overseas Filipinos, a law reviving the death penalty by lethal injection for crimes specified under the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, the National Housing Development bill and the Rental Housing Subsidy bill.
He also called for amendments to Republic Act No. 10912 or the Continuing Professional Development Act of 2016, the passage of the Nursing Education Act and the law instituting the Medical Reserve Corps.
Other proposals include the creation of the National Disease Prevention and Management Authority, the Department of Disaster Resilience, and the Boracay Island Development Authority (BIDA), and the passage of National Land Use Act and a law for the Unified System of Separation, Retirement and Pension of the Military and Uniformed Personnel.
There is also a need to modernize the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) as well as the Bureau of Immigration (BI), according to the President.
At the same time, President Duterte asked both houses of Congress to pass the bill establishing the Coconut Farmers’ Trust Fund, the Rural Agricultural and Fisheries Development Financing System Act, and the Internet Transactions Act (ITA).
“Tulungan natin ang ating mga magsasaka pagka hindi mawawala ‘yang pera, bilyon ‘yan. Well anyway… We have learned so many lessons along the way,” he told legislators with regards to the utilization of the coco levy fund. PND